An Incredible Summer: Danny Carpenter ’19

Camping, kids, outdoors, fun, and Jesus…what more could you want? Working at a summer camp changed my life for the better and I could not be more thankful.


When I was a freshman at Hope, I stumbled across a recruiting table for Springhill Camps. I had thought about working at a summer camp before, but I really only knew about Camp Geneva here in Holland. When the recruiter, Nick, asked if I wanted to do an ‘on-the-spot-interview’ I said sure. I had no idea that this decision would change the course of my life.

After that interview, I received the job and knew my plans for the next summer: working with a group of middle school boys every week. I was intimidated and excited. I had never been to Springhill before. Part of me wished that I had just applied to Camp Geneva because it was close and comfortable. But the Lord gave me this challenge to grow and meet people outside of my comfort zone and at a place I had never been before.

After the training and orientation jitters and anxieties, I got to bond with the new staff. This was an incredible group of people from all around the country with a passion and love for Jesus and kids. The random group of people on my staff became my people and my tribe for the summer. They were a group where I could truly be myself and the person who God intended me to be. I still thank the Lord for bringing these people near and dear to my heart.

I worked at Springhill for two summers. The first summer I was a general counselor for some of the coolest middle school boys in the whole world, and my second summer I had the honor of being an inclusion counselor for some wonderful campers with special needs. Springhill is truly incredible at including every camper regardless of their physical or mental abilities within the cabins and activities which also teaches campers that God loves every single child and designed them in His image.

A week at camp can be life changing for kids. To be in a place where they are loved by “cabinmates” and counselors, and where they are shown the love of Christ can leave an impact for their whole lives. Camp is a place where kids are accepted for who they are — A place where they can take off the masks that society gives them and gaze upon the beauty of the Lord. Not only does camp change the lives of campers, but the staff see their lives change as they experience the joy of new campers every week. Hearts of the counselors change through lessons of patience and hard work.

Life can be messy and sometimes difficult, but God is steadfast. Working at a Christian summer camp taught me many life lessons and stretched me beyond my comfort zone. Life is too short to play it safe and not pursue where God calls us to be. If you are thinking about it, you should apply to change lives through Springhill or another summer camp!

To explore opportunities to work at SpringHill or another summer camp, join us at the Summer Camp & Ministry Fair today from 11AM – 2 PM in the Bultman Student Center. You can learn more on Handshake.

 

My Summer at Camp Geneva: Addison Huss ’19

Thinking about my time at Camp Geneva always brings a smile to my face.  Who knew that three short months could impact your life so much?

Going into my summer, I expected to laugh, grow, and learn a lot, but I didn’t expect this opportunity to impact me as much as it did. I like to say that “camp showed me a little piece of heaven.” The way people encourage and love each other, laugh and play without a care in the world, and worship together is unlike anything I had ever experienced. Campers and staff alike enter into a place of pure joy when they go to Geneva.

My experience at camp was a little different than most because I worked as support staff. At times, this was very frustrating for me because I felt like I wasn’t making as much of an impact on the campers as their counselors were. 

However, this actually ended up being a huge blessing. It gave me the opportunity to pour into both campers and staff. I had the freedom to meet all of the campers, lead bible study for the cabin I was “adopting,” and encourage other support staff and counselors throughout each week.

Camp Geneva is one of the most beautiful places and getting to call it home for a whole summer was so special. The staff became a family, and the cabins became our homes. I will never forget my experience and would encourage those of you looking for an amazing summer opportunity to do the same! 

The Summer Camp and Ministry Fair will be happening in the Bultman Student Center on Wednesday January 23rd from 11AM – 2PM. You can find more information on Handshake.